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Do You Need Motivation or Discipline To Be Successful?

Most people believe that successful people are different to them. 

Maybe they are, but maybe they aren’t.

You see there’s an illusion that to be successful you have to be super-motivated all the time. 

The reality is that this is just not the case. 

I’ve been around long enough to see for myself and as I work predominantly with people who you would likely consider successful, I can confirm that I have never met anyone is ‘motivated’ 24/7. 


What successful people do have in common is that the vast majority of them have an incredible amount of DISCIPLINE.

Don’t get me wrong, motivation exists and it’s almost always part of the process at the very start of any journey. 

When I sit down with a new client for this first time to discuss what we are going to be doing, I make it abundantly clear that their time with me will always be the start of the process. 

For true long-term success, you need discipline and a flexible structure to adapt to your circumstances and goals at any one time.

Otherwise you are going to forever be repeating the cycle of being ‘on and off’ when it comes to your training and eating what’s right for you. 

Through both my own personal experiences and those of my clients, I know first-hand that motivation comes-and-goes. 

With this being the case, as our results are always the average of efforts you need more than motivation if you want to succeed. 

That’s where discipline comes into play and takes over. 

Discipline means you will sometimes do things that you don’t necessarily ‘want’ to do in order to achieve an outcome.

Had a long day at work? Fine, if you’ve scheduled to go to the gym that day, you go. 

Discipline means you will automate your schedule as much as possible but have the knowledge and ability to show flexibility when required.

Made your own lunch that is congruent with your goals and energy requirements? Good, eat it and skip the office take-away. 

Discipline means you ask less questions and just do what you need to do to get the job done.

Short on your activity for the week and it’s raining? Get wrapped up and go and get your steps in. 

If you rely on motivation to do any of the above, you might be able to do this for a short period of time. 

But, having a disciplined approach to what you do will ultimately lead you to places you likely didn’t even believe were possible.

Now you maybe saying… 

“Craig, but I’m just not like that?” 

And this is where I would say… 


You are like that, because you are already doing certain things today where you are showing disciple but don’t even realise it. 

Let’s say you have to be at work for 9am. 

Some days you might feel like staying in bed and not going, but you don’t. 

You get your arse out of bed and go anyway. 


You brush your teeth in the morning and in the evening, every day. 


It’s highly unlikely you think…

“Should I brush my teeth this morning?” 

You just do it.

BTW – if you do think this and come to the conclusion you shouldn’t brush your teeth we cannot be friends! 

Take some time about the things in your life where you are already showing some discipline and see how you can transfer that mindset to your health, nutrition and lifestyle. 

You may just be amazed at the results. 

Thanks for reading, have a great day.


Do you need confidential help with your health, fitness or nutrition? I have a range of services available, with Personal Training in my Private Gym in Manchester, also at your home or workplace in the surrounding areas. For clients further afield, I provide Online Personal TrainingNutritional Consultancy & Private Fitness Holidays.

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